ABOARD THE REGENT SEVEN SEAS EXPLORER —
The Nice attack struck a personal chord with many of the 628 travel advisers
and invited guests aboard the Regent Seven Seas Explorer inaugural cruise that
departed Monte Carlo in the wee hours of July 14.
Most had flown to the airport in Nice to board the ship, and
many had taken advantage of an excursion, offered by the cruise line en route
to the ship, into the city.
Frank Del Rio
Tragedy struck less than 24 hours after the ship departed Monegasque
waters, so it wasn’t surprising that one of the first questions from the
audience to Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings CEO Frank Del Rio during a town hall
meeting in the ship’s Constellation Theater the next day began “In view of
The questioner wondered if there was anything the executive
could share that the audience of travel advisers could say to reassure their
clients about the security aboard the vessel and on shore.
“Security issues are first and foremost on our minds,” Del
Rio said. Ships, he continued, are not soft targets. “They’re made of steel,”
he said, “and we are operating at the highest levels of security, and the ports
are operating at the highest level of security.”
There were, he added, “seamless” precautions that guests
can’t see. While he noted that there are some measures he couldn’t discuss, he
did mention that divers go beneath the ship before it leaves ports and that the
line takes great precautions when taking on provisions. Dogs were being used to
CLIA provides security support to all cruise lines, he said,
and additionally, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings subscribes to various safety
security services, as well as receiving current information from the State
Passengers sometimes get upset when a port call is canceled
or changed even though itineraries are planned years ahead, Del Rio said.
“Sometimes, people think it was done to save money. That’s not the case.
Sometimes, we may get news it might not be a good idea to go to that port at
“There’s a pattern, and it’s going to be broken. Nobody wants this. And I have great faith that when the world doesn’t want something, it’s very resourceful. This will end, and it will end soon.” — Frank Del Rio
What’s going on in the world is scary, he continued, “but we
also have to recognize that if it can happen in San Bernardino or in the land
of the mouse, it can happen anywhere. It’s important not to give in. Besides [travel]
being our livelihood, it’s our responsibility to thwart this behavior. We can’t
let them win, and we’re not going to let them win.”
The audience responded with energetic applause.
Earlier that day, in an interview with Travel Weekly, Del
Rio had said, “There’s a pattern, and it’s going to be broken. Nobody wants
this. And I have great faith that when the world doesn’t want something, it’s
very resourceful. This will end, and it will end soon.”
In the meantime, Del Rio said, “We have to rely on our [travel]
counselors, perhaps more than ever, to communicate information. Travel is still
safe and cruising is, by far, the safest mode of travel.”